Tried these out in my A-Bolt 270, factory rifle with Holland's brake and using factory ammo...four shots, one ragged hole at 100 yds. Accubonds do well, maybe 1.5 MOA, but my confidence went up significantly with the Barnes Vor-Tx.
I have a whitetail trip this fall to Oklahoma and shots will likely be inside of 200 yds. I don't think accuracy of either will be an issue, but confidence does wonders for me.
It seems like Barnes are either a love or hate with not a lot in between. From reading the searched threads it seems like many pencil thru, and there is no consensus of whether it happens only at long range or at short range...some even recommend hitting bone to get them to expand.
If inside of 150 yds or so, is this the sweet spot for Barnes, or is penciling an issue even at extremely short ranges? Doesn't seem to be any complaints about AB's, so maybe I should just use these, but my confidence is sky high after the TTSX's.
Any spread in groups with AB's I attributed to my errors, while the TTSX led me to believe that my abilities were there and that maybe my gun just doesn't like AB's as much as I thought.
I guess my question is mainly whether TTSx vs accubond performance is significant enough to offset the huge jump in confidence.
I started using them in Dad's 7mm Wby last year because they are extremely accurate in my handloads. He took a nice whitetail buck in TX last fall after getting a cow elk in MT, and the performance both times was excellent under 200 yards. Last week he used the rifle to get a black bear in Ontario at 90 yards and the performance was devastating.
I am having some of the same thoughts about my Nov. deer hunt in Nebraska. My son and I both have had great success using 140 Accubonds out of our 280 Remingtons, so why am I thinking about shooting the Barnes TTSX bullets this year? It is for the same reason that you are thinking about--accuracy.
My Rem 700 CDL shoots the Accubonds very good--.50-.75 inches at 100 yards is a usual group, but I seem to always be trying something different. So just for fun I loaded some 140TTSX bullets with N165 powder and shot a couple of three shot groups. You can see the results.
I have some experience with Barnes TTSX bullets since I have loaded the 80 grainers for my grandsons to use in a 243 Win.--they worked great. I loaded some for a hunting friends 30-06 and the 168TTSX worked great for a shot of less that 100 yards, so I don't think that they will pencil through without opening up. The 168TTSX left a huge exit wound in the deer so it did open up.
So as it stands now I will be shooting the 140 TTSX at a Nebraska deer come Nov..
I wouldn't worry about the TTSX pencilling thru. They have a much larger hollow cavity than the original TSX bullet that is intended to initiate expansion earlier. I am a HUGE proponent of the TSX and TTSX bullets. I currently shoot them in my wifes 270 winchester 130gr TTSX and have complete confidence on them on anything wolf to moose. I have been shooting the 168gr TSX for several years out of my 300 RUM @ 3340fps with devistating results. 2 caribou, 5 black bear, and 4 moose with that load. I also load the 270 TSX in my 375 RUM.
A buddy of mine has used the 120gr TTSX out of a 7mm-08 on moose a couple of times also with great terminal effect. With the 168 TSX I have gotten excellent terminal results as well as accuracy, The last moose I shot first shot thru the back rib quartered thru off shoulder joint, and second shot entered just left of the anus and exited out the front of the chest. Thats 5+ feet of meat, tissue and bone, with obvious expansion.
This year I tried out the 168 TTSX in my 300 RUM. It shot just as well as the TSX with the same loading with just a slight change of POI. I have a custom Remington 700 that has been lightened, and nitrided that I hunt with. Out of its 27" barrel I'm getting 3340fps and accuracy in the .5 MOA range.
I shot a caribou two days ago at 519 yards, first shot center punched the shoulder and exited out behind last rib, second shot high behind the shoulder, I noticed much more damage at the impact sight compared to the TSX bullets in the past which leads me to believe they do in fact expand quicker than the tax, but I also got two exit wounds for both shots, and punched thru a lot of bone so they must hold together also. This was a large bull caribou probably pushing 400 pounds live weight.
This coming weekend we are going to go up and try to get my wife a caribou and I'll let you know how that 130gr TTSX performs on moose or caribou. I would be very surprised if you were not very satisfied with the 130gr TTSX on any whitetail big or small.
4 or 5 years ago a fellow in our deer camp filled his buck tag and 2 antlerless tags on the last day off the season using a 22-250 with Barnes 53 gr. bullets. It was a snow covered day, and while I personally do not hunt deer with .224 cal., I was so impressed with the bullet performance on these 3 animals, I have used nothing but Barnes bullets since. This includes 20 whitetails, 5 pronghorns, and 2 big bull caribou. 2 of those animals went perhaps 40 yards, all other down in their tracks. I have only recovered 1 bullet, that from a 240# whitetail buck shot quartering on, with the .257 Roberts 100gr x- bullet, resting just under the hide on the opposite side, just in front of the hip. The perfectly peddled bullet still weighted 100grs! Needles to say, I'm a huge Barnes fan, and they shoot great in all my guns!